(Adds details and background)
MAPUTO, Sept 4 Mozambique's opposition leader
Afonso Dhlakama returned to the capital on Thursday after two
years in hiding, to ratify a pact between his Renamo party and
the government ending hostilities ahead of an Oct. 15 election,
a Reuters witness said.
Dhlakama, whose party has engaged in two years of sporadic
clashes with President Armando Guebuza's security forces,
chatted to supporters after landing at Maputo's airport, but did
not address journalists.
Renamo and the Frelimo government formally signed a peace
pact last week, paving the way for Dhlakama to leave his
hideaway in the bush and contest next month's presidential vote.
The former rebel leader was due to add his signature to the
peace agreement together with Guebuza on Friday, officials said.
Clashes between Renamo guerrillas and security forces over
the last two years had raised fears of the return of civil war,
which ravaged Mozambique from 1975 to 1992.
The southern African state is trying to rebuild its economy
by developing big coal and offshore gas deposits with foreign
Dhlakama, whose party has lost every election to Frelimo
since the end of the civil war, had fled back to the bush after
accusing the ruling party of an unfair monopoly on political and
(Reporting by Manuel Mucari; Writing by Stella Mapenzauswa;
Editing by Andrew Roche)